Page 49 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 1

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frequently constitute special studies and did, in fact, serve as
starting points for further investigation by later scholars.
Rapopor t’s very choice of men, to the recreation of whose life
he devoted himself, constituted a pioneer approach to the study
of Jewish history. Of this Dr. Solomon Schechter said: “Each of
these productions was epoch-making in its time, opening new
worlds to students. The men, for instance, who formed the sub-
jects of Rapopor t’s researches were not mere individuals, but
heads of schools, of either talmudical or liturgicals schools, as
in the case of Nathan and Kalir. Hananel and Nissim, again,
ushered in a new epoch in which the To rah was decentralized
from Babylon and new seats of learning were established in
different parts of the world.”
Rapopor t’s chief contribution was thus the revival of Jewish
history, the removal from the Jews of the disgrace of having
forgotten their past and the achievements of their heroes. The
great progress in historical research which the Jews have made
during the past century must in large measure be credited to him.
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